If you are forced to limp as you place your first few steps out of bed in the morning due to acute heel pain, then it is a sure sign of plantar fasciitis (pronounced as fashee-EYE-tiss). The disorder affects the plantar or the sole of the foot. Plantar fasciitis results in severe pain due to the inflammation of the fibrous band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the base of the toes.
Compared to men, women are more prone to this condition. If your job forces you to walk long distances or if you need to stand for long on hard surfaces, then you are in the danger zone. People who are over weight and also those with flat feet and high arches are prone to this disorder. The early symptom of plantar fasciitis is a slight pain at the heel bone, similar to that caused by a stone bruise. This pain usually occurs after a session of exercise or when you stand up after having sitting down for some time.
If not brought under a doctor’s notice at the right time itself, plantar fasciitis can turn out to be extremely severe. The disorder can lead to back ache, hip pain and knee problems. This is because plantar fasciitis will drastically change your walking pattern.
Giving proper rest to your feet is the most effective way by which plantar fasciitis can be treated. Applying ice to the affected area for almost twenty minutes will provide enough solace. This can be repeated thrice a day. Doctors usually prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication for this disorder. Certain exercises help in stretching the Achilles tendon and thereby check the recurrence of plantar fasciitis.
Leaning forward against a wall with one knee straight and heel firmly on the ground is one such exercise that can be tried out. The other knee should be kept bend. Heel cord and foot arch will stretch as you lean. After holding like that for ten seconds, you can relax and come back to normal posture. This needs to be repeated for about twenty times a day. Initial treatments including regular exercise provide relief to ninety percent of people affected with plantar fasciitis.